Heinrich C. Berann

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Painting of Yellowstone as seen from the north.

Heinrich C. Berann, (1915–1999) the father of the modern panorama map, was born into a family of painters and sculptors in Innsbruck, Austria. He taught himself by trial and error. In the years 1930-1933 he attended the arts and design school "Bundeslehranstalt für Malerei" in Innsbruck.

Winning of first prize at a competition for a panorama map created great enthusiasm in him. Using his artistic heritage and new self-discovered techniques he invented a new way of painting landscapes for tourist purposes. The further development of both these panorama maps and his artistic style was influenced by lasting impressions he received during his military service in German Army in Norway and Northern Finland in 1942.

Painting of Yosemite

He married Ludmilla Herold in 1941 and they had two daughters: Elisabeth and Angela.

In 1962 he painted Mount Everest for the National Geographic Society. He worked with Marie Tharp and Bruce C. Heezen to produce maps of the entire ocean floor in 1977.

He later created four panoramas for the United States National Park Service: Yellowstone National Park, North Cascades National Park, Yosemite National Park and finally Mt. McKinley National Park (now Denali). He was very sick when he painted Denali - but he finished it in the age of 81.

In 2000, Tom Patterson of the National Park Service explored ways of digitally creating panoramas like Berann did for the Park Service.


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